Clay Aiken’s Political Rival Keith Crisco Found Dead: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Keith Crisco, a Democratic rival of Clay Aiken, was found dead in his home in Randolph County, North Carolina, reports WRAL. He was 71 years old.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. He’s Reported to Have Died After a Fall

It’s reported that Crisco died after falling down the stairs while leaving his home, reports The Courier-Tribune. He was found at around 1 p.m. local time at his home Thayer Drive in Asheboro, North Carolina, shown here:

2. Crisco Leaves Behind a Wife & 3 Kids

He’s survived by his wife Jane, three kids, and six grandchildren. He had been married to his wife 49 years. The family were a regular fixture at the First United Methodist Church in Asheboro. He was a Sunday school teacher and lay leader.

3. Crisco Was Planning to Concede to Clay Aiken

Crisco was running in the upcoming congressional race on a jobs platform. Aiken and Crisco were neck-and-neck in the race to fill the Democratic nomination. A canvass was due on May 13 to decide how to proceed. On last count, Aiken was ahead of Crisco by 369 votes. A Democratic strategist in North Carolina, Brad Crone, told WRAL that Crisco planned to concede on May 13, he added:

This is a shocking day. I have known Keith for nearly 30 years and consider him a good friend. He has done a great deal for his community and his state. I will miss his insights and his wry sense of humor and his keen mind for math and statistics.

Clay Aiken American Idol


4. Crisco Was a Successful Businessman

He founded the company Asheboro Elastics in 1985. His career in elastics began when he served as president of Stedman Elastics from 1978-1986.

5. He Was a Career-Public Servant

Keith Crisco Politics

Prior to announcing his candidacy Crisco served as the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Commerce from 2009-2013. On the about section of his campaign website, he states:

In 2008, Keith was asked to serve as Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Commerce. In four years he helped recruit nearly 120,000 jobs and more than $27 billion in investment for the North Carolina economy.

In 1970, he spent one year as the assistant to the United States Secretary of Commerce.

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